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Foxtrot- Genesis


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1. Watcher Of The Skies begins the album with an organ playing comtemplative chords solo then moves to a more lively bass line and Peter Gabriel on lead vocals. The bass remains heavily present throughout the song. The vocals stop repeatedly to make way for organ solos and a bass-organ call-and-return section. It is musically constructed seemingly flawlessly with a grand sound. The vocal melody is backed by the band giving a rich, full sound which makes this, and other songs on Foxtrot, memorable.

2. Time Table contrasts the huge sound of the opening track by starting with a pleasantly simple piano intro then a softer song telling of the chivalrous ideals of medieaval times. Peter Gabriel's vocals are again outstanding and the lyrics and melody mesh with the piano backing perfectly. The song's reminiscent, yearning tone leaves an impression.

3. Get 'Em Out By Friday starts with an electric guitar riff leading to vocals in contrasting tones, heavy and dark then light and sweet. This contrast is emphasised skillfully through the vocals and overall orchestration.

4. Can-Utility And The Coastliners again contrasts from Watcher Of The Skies and Get 'Em Out By Friday with a softer feel and the band pulls it off excellently, with ever-present guitars backing a long instrumental section with keyboard leading. Excellently composed and performed.

5. Horizons is a classical guitar instrumental with bits borrowed from Bach. It is, in my opinion, the weakest of the tracks on this album.

6. The obvious masterpiece of Foxtrot is Supper's Ready, a 23- minute epic broken into 7 parts: Lover's Leap, The Guaranteed Eternal Sanctuary Man, Ikhnaton and Itsacon and Their Band of Merry Men, How Dare I Be So Beautiful?, Willow Farm, Apocalypse In 9/8 (co-starring the delicious talents of Gabble Ratchet), As Sure As Eggs Is Eggs (Aching men's feet). It tells of a voyage between worlds then coming back to our earth just in time to witness the apocalypse. It is excellently composed in terms of lyrics, music, and orchestration (I use this word because the way the band parts are written reminds me more of classical music than rock). If you can handle the length, you will find that this is one of the best songs ever written. It is, in my opinion, easily comparable to 2112, Karn Evil 9 or Close To The Edge.

All in all, Foxtrot is outstanding musically and is still remarkably entertaining. The are often many instruments behind the vocals, but their parts have been composed in such a way that the listener gets an impression of one single, perfect sound. Genesis performs the softer, simpler songs equally well, making for contrast keeping interest. I give the album 9/10.

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  • 1 month later...

I love "Time Table". I could actually see Elton John covering it.

"Horizons" is actually my favorite track on the disc, but then again I'm a fan of guitarist Steve Hackett who wrote and performed it. He recorded a different version of it on one of his solo albums, and it also appears on a couple of his live albums.

I could take or leave the rest of the album, even the Big Two tracks ("Watcher Of The Skies" and "Supper's Ready"). However there are better versions of those two songs on other albums: "Watcher" on Genesis Live and also on Hackett's Watcher Of The Skies: Genesis Revisited album he recorded with the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra; and "Supper's Ready" as sung by Phil Collins on the Seconds Out live album.

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  • 7 months later...
  • 4 months later...

Nope, SEBTP is definetly not better. It has it's moments ("Dancing With The Moonlit Knight" [possibly my favourite Genesis song], "Firth of Fifth" and "The Cinema Show") but it is very inconsistent. I find "I Know What I Like (In Your Wardrobe)" pretty goofy, and "The Battle Of Epping Forest" really drags on- the concept in "Get 'Em Out By Friday" on Foxtrot works much better in my opinion.

Maybe I'll do a full review later. I haven't done a critical review here yet.

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Thanks for the advice. I haven't bought any Genesis albums yet. I'm too busy listening to In The Land Of Grey And Pink, another great album that ends with a 22 minute masterpiece. :rockon:

For now I'm content with the great Genesis songs I already have in my collection.

Take a little trip back, with Father Tiresias,

Listen to the old one speak, of all he has lived through,

I have crossed between the poles,

To me there's no mystery,

Once a man, like the sea I raged,

Once a woman, like the Earth I gave,

But there is, in fact, more Earth than sea.


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